Formed from the ashes of glamsters TrashQueen, new Swedish AOR act Cruzh has become as near to an overnight sensation as is possible in the flooded rock world in 2016.
Coming together in 2013 under a veil of secrecy of sorts, the trio (the band has no permanent drummer at this time), comprised of lead vocalist / keyboardist Tony Andersson, guitarist Anton Joensson and bassist, Dennis Butabi Borg, kept their identities under wraps while delivering a self-released single, “In a Blink of an Eye” to an unsuspecting public, calling themselves Crush. The reason for that, according to Borg, was “because we wanted to create a buzz, a talk of the town among melodic rock lovers. We had a good run some months when we would spread various clues about our whereabouts and rock fans came with both realistic and crazy guesses. One nice gentlemen was 100% sure that we were REO Speedwagon after the release of “In a Blink of an Eye”, not bad at all. It was fun but we really wanted people to focus on our songs instead of our personalities.” The track spread like wildfire, with genuine interest in the band increasing weekly.
Soon, Frontiers came calling and the band thought it was someone pulling their collective leg: “Our demo Ep and demo single spread quite fast and wide and along the road Frontiers got ahold of us. They contacted us and offered us a deal, instantly we thought that someone was bullshitting with us,” Borg laughs. “After a while we realized it was for real and started our negotiations with a company we could only dream of working with at that time.”
With pre-production beginning on the band’s self-titled album at the end of summer 2015, progress was smooth and swift and they started tracking with producer Erik Wiss in late September. “We recorded guitars, keyboards and vocals in our own studio,” Borg recalls. “Drums were recorded at “The Boom Lab” in Helsingborg, Sweden and I put down the bass with Erik at his studio in Malmö, Sweden. This was our first encounter with Erik but certainly won’t be the last. We clicked perfectly, same visions, same flow n’ go.”
Louisian Boltner was the drummer but isn’t actually in the band. Dennis explains why: “”Louisian is a good friend of ours, he has never been a member of the band though. He works fulltime with his studio, drum clinics and studio sessions so it has never been a question for us to deal with. Cruzh needs 100% focus from it’s members. He is an awesome resource when we’re talking studio sessions though, extremely talented.”
What is the concept behind the “Aim for the Head” video? What did she “have for him” and why were they trying to kill each other? “The concept is kind of a continuation of a story that began with our first cover art on the first Ep. The story itself in the video reflects the lyrics to the track. It’s a classic “fierce woman playing games with poor rockstar” story. Haha. As of right now we can’t really give any in-depth details surrounding ‘what she has in for him’ since the story is far from over. As they say – to be continued.”
Who produced and directed the video? “I directed the movie as far as creating the story, the concept and manuscript. The whole band was involved in the casting process and when it came to producing and filming we hired a very talented guy called Jan Kivisaar for the task,” says Borg.
On the live front, Dennis reveals, “as of right now we’re preparing and rehearsing to go live. We can’t wait to get on stage and play our songs and I think we’ll start sometime early 2017. We have no geographical barriers, the sky is the limit.”
With Cruzh the onslaught of top class Swedish melodic rock artists not only continues but also suggests that there is (thankfully) no end in sight. In the band’s self-titled album the band hints at greatness and we look forward to seeing where this lot goes next.
– Dave Tedder